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How To Score Really Cheap Lodging – Airbnb Hostel


Modified: December 28, 2023

by Ashil Hoover



When it comes to traveling on a budget, finding affordable accommodation is often a top priority. Fortunately, with the rise of digital platforms and alternative lodging options, it has become easier than ever to score really cheap lodging. Whether you’re a budget-conscious traveler or simply looking to save some money on your next trip, this article will guide you through the world of Airbnb and hostels, two popular and cost-effective options for accommodation.


Gone are the days when hotels were the only choice for travelers. Now, with just a few clicks, you can find a wide range of accommodation options that fit your budget and preferences. Airbnb, the online marketplace that connects travelers with hosts who rent out their homes, has revolutionized the way people book accommodations. On the other hand, hostels have long been known as a backpacker’s haven, providing affordable shared accommodations and a social atmosphere.


In this article, we will delve into the world of Airbnb and hostels, exploring the benefits and drawbacks of each, as well as providing tips on how to find the best deals. So, if you’re looking to stretch your travel budget and have a unique experience, keep reading to discover how you can score really cheap lodging with Airbnb and hostels!


Finding Cheap Accommodation Options

When it comes to finding cheap accommodation options, it’s essential to explore a variety of sources and consider your travel needs. Here are some avenues to explore when searching for budget-friendly lodging:

  1. Online Travel Agencies (OTAs): Websites like Booking.com, Expedia, and Hotels.com offer a wide range of accommodations at competitive prices. These platforms often have special deals and discounts, allowing you to find affordable options for your stay.
  2. Comparison Sites: Utilize comparison sites like Trivago and Kayak to compare prices across multiple platforms. These sites show you the best available rates from various sources, making it easier to find the most cost-effective accommodation.
  3. Direct Booking: Contacting hotels or guesthouses directly can sometimes lead to better rates or the possibility of negotiating a discount. This is especially true for smaller establishments or during low season when they may be more open to offering deals.
  4. Travel Forums and Communities: Joining travel forums or online communities can provide valuable insights from fellow travelers who share their experiences and recommendations for affordable accommodations.

In addition to these sources, Airbnb and hostels have become go-to options for travelers seeking cheap lodging. Let’s explore each of these options in more detail.


Exploring Airbnb as a Budget-friendly Option

Airbnb has gained immense popularity in recent years, offering an alternative to traditional hotels. With Airbnb, travelers can find unique and affordable accommodations that span the globe. Here are some reasons why Airbnb is a great choice for those on a budget:

  • Variety of Options: Airbnb offers a wide range of lodging options, including private rooms, shared rooms, entire apartments, and even unique properties like treehouses or houseboats. This allows you to find the perfect accommodation that suits your budget and travel style.
  • Competitive Pricing: Airbnb can often provide significantly lower prices compared to hotels, especially when booking for longer stays. Additionally, hosts may offer discounts or special rates during off-peak seasons, allowing you to save even more.
  • Kitchen Facilities: One of the biggest advantages of staying in an Airbnb is the access to a kitchen. This allows you to cook your own meals and save money on dining out, a significant cost when traveling.
  • Local Experience: By staying in an Airbnb, you’ll have the opportunity to interact with local hosts who can provide insider tips and recommendations. This can enhance your travel experience and help you discover hidden gems that are not mentioned in guidebooks.

However, it’s important to be thorough when using Airbnb to find cheap lodging. Read reviews from previous guests to ensure the accuracy of the listing and check the location and amenities carefully. Additionally, consider factors such as cleaning fees, service charges, and security deposits that may impact the overall cost.


Now that we’ve explored Airbnb, let’s take a look at another budget-friendly option: hostels!


Benefits of Staying in Hostels

Hostels have been a popular choice for budget travelers for many years, and for good reason. Here are some of the benefits of staying in hostels:

  • Affordable Prices: One of the most obvious advantages of staying in a hostel is the cost. Hostels offer dormitory-style accommodations, where you can book a bed in a shared room with other travelers. This significantly reduces the cost of accommodation compared to staying in a hotel or renting an entire apartment.
  • Social Atmosphere: Hostels provide a vibrant and social environment, making them ideal for solo travelers or those looking to meet other like-minded individuals. Common areas such as the lounge, kitchen, or outdoor spaces encourage interaction and create opportunities to make new friends from around the world.
  • Amenities and Facilities: Despite being budget-friendly, hostels often provide essential amenities such as Wi-Fi, communal kitchens, laundry facilities, and common areas for socializing. Some hostels may even offer additional perks like free breakfast or organized activities, further enhancing the value for money.
  • Local Knowledge and Recommendations: Hostel staff members are usually well-versed in the local area and can provide valuable insights and recommendations. Whether you’re seeking the best local food spots or off-the-beaten-path attractions, the staff can help you make the most of your stay.
  • Flexibility and Freedom: Hostels are known for their relaxed atmosphere, allowing guests the freedom to come and go as they please. Many hostels have 24-hour reception, providing convenience for late-night arrivals or early morning departures.

While hostels may not offer the same level of privacy and comfort as a private hotel room, they provide a unique and cost-effective experience for adventurous travelers. It’s important to note that hostels come in varying shapes and sizes, ranging from party-oriented to more quiet and peaceful options. Researching and reading reviews will help you find a hostel that aligns with your preferences and travel style.


Now that we’ve explored the benefits of staying in hostels, let’s move on to the next section – choosing the right Airbnb or hostel!


Choosing the Right Airbnb or Hostel

When it comes to choosing the right Airbnb or hostel, there are several factors to consider to ensure a comfortable and enjoyable stay. Here are some tips to help you make the right choice:

  • Location: Consider the location of the accommodation in relation to your planned activities and attractions. Is it conveniently located near public transportation or within walking distance of key points of interest? Keep in mind that staying in a slightly less central area can often result in lower prices.
  • Reviews and Ratings: Read reviews from previous guests to get an understanding of their experiences. Pay attention to aspects such as cleanliness, comfort, and the responsiveness of the host or hostel staff. Look for properties or hostels with consistently positive reviews.
  • Facilities and Amenities: Assess the facilities and amenities provided. For Airbnb, check if essentials like Wi-Fi, hot water, and kitchen access are available. For hostels, see if they offer lockers, communal spaces, and any additional perks such as free breakfast or social activities.
  • Host/Staff Communication: If you’re considering an Airbnb, it’s important to have good communication with the host. Prompt and clear communication can prevent any misunderstandings or issues during your stay. Similarly, for hostels, check if the staff is responsive and helpful.
  • Price and Additional Costs: Compare prices among different options and consider any additional costs such as cleaning fees, service charges, or security deposits. Calculate the overall cost to ensure it fits within your budget.

Additionally, take advantage of the photos provided on Airbnb or hostel booking platforms. Carefully examine the images to get a sense of the property’s condition, size, and layout. Look for clear, well-lit photos that accurately represent the space.


Lastly, trust your intuition. If something feels off or if the listing or hostel lacks necessary information, it may be best to explore other options. Trustworthy and detailed listings/hostel websites are more likely to provide a positive experience.


By considering these factors and doing your research, you can choose the right Airbnb or hostel that aligns with your preferences and budget. Now, let’s move on to the next section – tips for scoring the best deals!


Tips for Scoring the Best Deals

When it comes to scoring the best deals on Airbnb and hostels, a little time and effort can go a long way. Here are some tips to help you find the most affordable accommodations:

  • Be Flexible with Your Travel Dates: Prices for accommodations can vary significantly depending on the time of year and day of the week. Consider traveling during off-peak seasons or on weekdays to take advantage of lower rates.
  • Book in Advance: It’s generally recommended to book your accommodations well in advance if possible. By doing so, you increase your chances of securing the best deals and availability, especially during busy travel periods.
  • Use Filters and Search Options: Utilize the filters and search options provided on Airbnb and hostel booking websites to narrow down your options. You can filter by price range, rating, amenities, and location preferences to find the most suitable and affordable choices.
  • Consider Shared Rooms and Dorms: If you’re comfortable with it, opting for a shared room or dormitory-style accommodation in a hostel can save you a significant amount of money compared to private rooms.
  • Look for Special Offers and Discounts: Keep an eye out for special offers, discounts, or promo codes provided by Airbnb hosts or hostel management. These can help you secure even better deals on your accommodations.
  • Negotiate Rates: In some cases, particularly for longer stays in an Airbnb or in quieter seasons, it may be worth trying to negotiate the rate with the host directly. It doesn’t hurt to ask if there is any flexibility in the pricing.

Additionally, consider joining loyalty programs or signing up for newsletters from OTAs or hostel booking platforms to receive exclusive deals or early access to discounts.


Remember to always read the fine print before making any bookings. Pay attention to cancellation policies, refund policies, and any additional fees that may apply. This will ensure you have a clear understanding of the terms and conditions associated with your chosen lodging.


By implementing these tips, you’ll increase your chances of finding the best deals on Airbnb and hostels, allowing you to make the most of your travel budget.


Now that you’ve discovered how to score the best deals, let’s move on to the final section – making the most of your budget accommodation experience!


Making the Most of Your Budget Accommodation Experience

Staying in a budget accommodation doesn’t mean compromising on the quality of your travel experience. With the right mindset and a few simple strategies, you can make the most of your budget accommodation experience. Here’s how:

  • Embrace the Local Culture: One of the advantages of staying in an Airbnb or hostel is the opportunity to immerse yourself in the local culture. Interact with your hosts and fellow travelers, ask for recommendations on local attractions, restaurants, and events. Engaging with the local community can provide unique insights and enhance your overall travel experience.
  • Cook Your Own Meals: If you’re staying in an Airbnb with a kitchen or a hostel with communal cooking facilities, take advantage of it. Visit local markets, buy fresh ingredients, and prepare your own meals. Not only will this save you money, but it can also be a fun and rewarding culinary experience.
  • Plan Ahead: Research and plan your activities in advance to make the most of your time. Take note of free attractions, walking tours, or discounted activities and make a schedule that maximizes your exploration while minimizing costs.
  • Use Public Transportation or Walk: Utilize public transportation options such as buses, trains, or trams to get around the city or town. Opting for walking or cycling whenever feasible is not only economical but also allows you to experience the destination from a local’s perspective.
  • Connect with Other Travelers: Take advantage of the social atmosphere in hostels to connect with other travelers. Not only can you make new friends from different parts of the world, but you can also share travel tips, split costs for transportation, or even plan outings together.
  • Take Advantage of Free Amenities: Many accommodations, including hostels, offer free amenities such as Wi-Fi, city maps, and luggage storage. Make sure to utilize these complimentary services to save money on additional expenses.
  • Be Respectful and Considerate: Whether you’re staying with an Airbnb host or sharing a dorm room in a hostel, always be respectful of the property, the rules of the accommodation, and the privacy of other guests. Being a respectful and considerate guest ensures a positive experience for everyone involved.

Remember, the key to making the most of your budget accommodation experience is to maintain an open mind, embrace the adventure, and focus on the unique opportunities that come with staying in affordable accommodations.


With these tips in mind, you’re ready to embark on your budget-friendly travel journey and create memorable experiences without breaking the bank!


Now, let’s wrap up this article.



Traveling on a budget doesn’t mean compromising on the quality of your accommodations or the experience you can have. By exploring options like Airbnb and hostels, you can score really cheap lodging without sacrificing comfort or enjoyment.


Airbnb provides a wide range of unique and affordable accommodations, allowing you to immerse yourself in the local culture while enjoying competitive pricing and the flexibility of having a kitchen. Hostels, on the other hand, offer a social atmosphere, cost-effective dormitory-style rooms, and a chance to connect with fellow travelers.


To make the most of your budget accommodation experience, it’s important to choose the right Airbnb or hostel based on factors such as location, reviews, and amenities. Additionally, by being flexible with your travel dates, utilizing search filters, and taking advantage of special offers, you can score the best deals and save money.


During your stay, engage with the local community, cook your own meals, and plan your activities in advance to get the most out of your budget accommodation experience. Connect with fellow travelers, embrace the local culture, and utilize free amenities provided by the accommodations.


In conclusion, with careful planning and a mindset of adventure, you can have an amazing travel experience while staying within your budget. Whether you choose Airbnb or hostels, these budget-friendly options open up a world of affordable accommodation possibilities, allowing you to explore new destinations without breaking the bank. So, pack your bags, book your affordable lodging, and embark on your next unforgettable journey!